The SmarK Rant for NJPW Dominion 06.09.18 (Part 2)

Continuing on with the second part of the Dominion show, with another three matches!

Live from Osaka Jo Hall

Your hosts are Kevin Kelly & Don Callis

NEVER Openweight title: Hirooki Goto v. Michael Elgin v. Taichi

Goto and Elgin wisely decide that teaming up on Taichi (the Carmella of Suzuki-gun) would be the easiest course, but he runs away from them. Goto and Elgin slug it out instead while Taichi keeps running away. Elgin hits Goto with an enzuigiri, but Taichi boots him out of the ring. Back in, Taichi and Goto team up on Goto with kicks and Taichi offers a truce, but Goto of course turns on him. Elgin dodges both guys and suplexes Taichi, but Goto hauls Taichi out of the ring for a fight until Elgin dives onto them. Back in, Elgin destroys Taichi with a corner clothesline, but Goto charges in and walks into a Taichi lariat that gets two. It’s time for the TINY PANTS, but Goto drops him with a neckbreaker for two. They fight to the top and Elgin breaks it up, so Goto suplexes him down and we get a Tower of Doom spot instead. It always gets a pop, no matter what. Elgin tosses Taichi and we got a hoss battle between Elgin and Goto, and Elgin gets an electric chair drop for two. Goto escapes a powerbomb and ducks an enzuigiri, setting up the Ushigoroshi for two. Taichi uses some distraction and hits both guys with his microphone stand, but makes the mistake of laughing maniacally about his genius, and a superkick on Goto only gets two. Elgin powerbombs him into the buckle, however, ending his merriment, and then powerbombs him into Goto and finishes with one more bomb at 13:43 to win the NEVER title. Kind of surprising that they’d put a title on Elgin after all the unpleasantness, but this was good stuff and I’ve always been a big fan of Elgin. Definitely would have been better without Taichi running around like a clown, but they can always do a rematch, I guess. ***1/4

IWGP Tag titles: EVIL & SANADA v. The Young Bucks

The Bucks do some double-team gymnastics on both guys and send them to the floor, and Nick follows with a corkscrew moonsault onto them. He’s very humble in his momentary victory, as well. Back in, EVIL catches Matt with a sideslam and tosses him outside for some punishment as Matt’s back is flaring up already. Back in, SANADA with a standing moonsault for two. EVIL with a neckbreaker for two. He misses a senton, but SANADA cuts off the tag while Matt does his new back injury gag. I’m shocked they haven’t come up with a t-shirt to market it yet. Nick gets the tag and throws kicks on everyone to put the champs on the floor, but he throws one kick too many and hits the post by mistake. OUCH. EVIL then takes out the shin on the apron and Nick takes a crazy bump to the floor off that. DOUBLE OUCH. Back in, LIJ goes to work on the leg and Matt accidentally superkicks his own brother, so things are looking bad. Nick tries to fight them off, but EVIL drops him with a lariat for two. Nick escapes a Magic Killer and Matt comes in to help out with a superplex and some motivational words, but EVIL turns it into a double powerbomb on the Bucks instead. EVIL goes back to the leg, and Nick tries a high kick like an idiot and hurts his own foot again. Back to Matt and he slugs it out with SANADA, and they trade flips out of the corner before EVIL breaks up the Indytaker. Sharpshooter on EVIL, but SANADA is the legal man and he breaks it up with Skull End, which Nick breaks up with a missile dropkick. Phew. EVIL pounds on Matt in the corner and gets a spinebuster for two. Matt reverses an STO into a tombstone, but Nick again is unable to finish the Indytaker, and EVIL reverses into his own Indytaker. They toss Nick and hit a Magic Killer on Matt for two, but Nick manages to save again. SANADA dives onto Nick to get rid of him again, but Matt backslides EVIL for two. SANADA dives in with Skull End into a EVIL superkick, but Matt pulls out a lariat on EVIL. SANADA gets rid of Nick again, back into Skull End on Matt, and he goes up with a moonsault that misses. Nick comes back in for a superkick party, but he hurts his foot again. One last double superkick on EVIL, however, and one on SANADA, and MORE BANG FOR YOUR BUCK finishes at 15:03 to give them the IWGP titles! I’m really digging this “get injured and fight from underneath” deal they’ve been doing this year. This was some GREAT tag team wrestling, yo. But as they say, this is what they do for a living. ****

Jushin Liger, Rey Mysterio & Hiroshi Tanahashi v. The Bullet Club (Cody Rhodes, Marty Scurll & Adam Page)

Who could hear Liger’s music and still not get pumped up? This came about from Scurll trolling Liger and Rey, as he is apt to do. Cody spurns Don Callis by giving his magic ring to Kevin instead. “Is he mad because I called him a pan-sexual narcissist on Twitter?” Scurrl asks for Rey to start, and then runs away and lets Page have him. So Page wants Tanahashi and he goes after the arm, but that goes badly for him until he drops an elbow on the back. Over to Cody, who wants a pushup contest with Tanahashi before Rey comes in for the first time. Rey with a sunset flip on Scurll for two and he snaps off a rana and brings in Liger, who baseball slides Scurll and wraps him up in the Romero Special to pay off the buildup. The Club breaks that up and Scurll tries his own version on Liger, but the Club works Liger over instead. We HAVE to get a heat segment on Rey at some point here. Bullet Club triple-teams Liger and Page gets a standing moonsault for two. Scurll comes in and goes for the leg, but Liger hits a backbreaker and it’s over to Rey. Flying senton on Scurll and a tornado DDT follows, but Scurll tags out to escape the 619. Tanahashi hits Page with a legwhip and a neckbreaker, but Scurll gets the cheapshot on the apron and Page puts him down with a lariat. Liger comes in and rolls up Cody for two, and a small package gets two. Shote gets two. Scurll tries to break Rey’s fingers but he escapes with an enzuigiri, and it’s a double 619 for Page and Scurll as a result. Sling blade for Page puts him on the floor, leaving Liger and Cody, and Liger takes him down with a top rope rana. Cody with Cross Rhodes, however, and that finishes at 11:34. Way too short, actually, as they were just getting into third gear when the finish came. Leave ‘em wanting more, I guess. Still a really fun match. **1/2

Back tomorrow with the Junior heavyweight title and Intercontinental title matches!